3 Ways To Identify And Avoid Gas-lighters
The word “gaslight” comes from a 1938 play and subsequent film adaptation called Gas Light, about a murderous thief who tricks his wife into thinking she is insane in order to cover up his crimes.
From the origin of this word, meanings have evolved. Gaslighting is a psychological term that refers to a very specific pattern of behavior where one person manipulates or attempts to manipulate another’s perception of reality.
Often, the person being gaslighted might not identify it because the person manipulating you is trying to gain control over your emotions gradually. Therefore, if you’ve ever felt that someone was making you doubt yourself, your capabilities, and your sense of reality, then maybe you’ve been the victim of gaslighting.
You can be gaslit by anyone, a parent, a spouse, a friend, a coworker, even a total stranger. You just have to notice the hints and the feelings you get from these manipulators.
Below are signs of a gaslighter:
Manipulative with the truth
If you catch someone in a lie, they are supposed to apologise and beg for forgiveness. Maybe they try to explain what they were thinking. A gaslighter falls back on technicalities, they say things like, “I didn’t tell you everything because you’d get upset, like you always do.” Somehow they find a way to make the lie your fault.
Insults and embarrasses you jokingly
Gaslighters lack the courage to say what they’re really thinking. Instead, they say nasty things in the name of jokes. They bury criticisms in phrases like, “I love you anyway.” They make insults in the forms of compliments and observations. When you ask them to stop, they call you sensitive and you become a bad person.
Trivialising your feelings and emotions
When you are in a healthy relationship, you discuss things that you do not like with your partners, however, you dare not with a gaslighter. They want to convince you that you’re being unreasonable. Gaslighters want to see you lose your cool in front of everyone else because it gives them a strong alibi.
If you are a victim of gaslighting, it is imperative that you ensure you avoid reacting the way they want you to. The best way to go about this is to proceed as usual. Act like they didn’t say anything. Pretend they don’t exist. Pretend they said nothing.
Always have your confidence, a gaslighter just wants to tear you down and make you doubt the importance of your existence, and when you shout and raise your voice, you give them the power to do that. However, when you constantly keep calm and ensure you are confident, they lose their purpose and you walk away from the situation with your head held high.